Jewelry Business Advice on How to Create Commissioned Jewelry
The decision whether or not to create custom jewelry can weigh heavily on a jewelry artist. While some pieces are fun to do, it also takes a lot of extra time and energy. However, Kristy Abner, owner of Kristy’s Kreations, finds making commissioned jewelry has boosted her retention rate for customers of her online store.
In our exclusive interview, Kristy has provided some advice on making commissioned jewelry part of your business without getting overwhelmed.
Q: Is there a process to making your business open to custom orders?
A: I find that most customers will ask, whether in person or by sending a message via my website, if it’s possible for me to make something in particular. I also have a blurb on my website instructing anyone who would like a custom order to “please fill out the form below,” and that is how I am approached most often.
Q: What is the most successful way to market the fact that you accept custom orders?
A: I would recommend stating it on your website or Etsy store and also on your business cards.
Q: How do you communicate with customers about their requests?
A: Since I don’t list my phone number on my website or business cards, I communicate mainly through email, although there have certainly been times when I have discussed orders over the phone.
If I’m approached at a jewelry or art show regarding a custom order, then I get as much information as I can in person. I always carry a notebook to any show that I participate in, specifically for that purpose.
Q: Are there guidelines of what you will or will not do when someone commissions jewelry from you?
A: One thing I will not do is order supplies or complete the piece without half of the payment up front. The other half is then paid upon completion of the piece.
Q: How often do you receive custom orders?
A: I would say that about twenty percent of my sales come from custom orders. On average, I receive custom orders once a month, but the number is much higher at certain times of the year, like Mother’s Day and Christmas.
Q: Have custom orders helped boost sales and activity on your website?
A: Yes, I believe so, because I have many customers who started off wanting a custom order and then came back to my website to shop my finished pieces.
Photos courtesy of Kristy Abner.
Find more from Kristy Abner at the Interweave Store: